Boston.com- Recently I received an email alerting me to an important survey conducted by CARE about sex and alcohol use on overnight college visits for high school student applicants. The email read: “Roughly one in six surveyed teens (16 percent) who had been on an overnight college admissions visit reported drinking alcohol during the visit. Teens also reported engaging in sex or other intimate sexual behavior (17 percent), using drugs other than alcohol (5 percent) or driving while impaired (2 percent) during their overnight college visit.” Most concerning, in my opinion, is that for half of those kids, it was their first experience with sex or alcohol. This suggests that high schoolers visiting college may a particularly vulnerable group. They may be initiated into the world of college life before they are quite ready for it. With regards to sexual encounters, it is quite likely, given the circumstances, that these are one time affairs. Such an experience may have negative consequences, particularly in the setting of emerging sexual identity. My hope is that in calling attention to the issue, it will help to prevent college bound teenagers from getting themselves into uncomfortable or unhealthy situations.
So wait, kids about to go to college do things actual college kids do when they go to visit colleges? No fucking way! News flash: College is the four year definition of an uncomfortable and unhealthy situation. You’ve got to start learning eventually. The point of a college visit is to figure out the best place for you to spend the next four years of your life at and irrational amounts of money on. You can sit in on a class, talk to a professor, maybe take a tour (because who better to give you a true feel for the school than an Asian biochem major on the rowing team who spent the summer abroad teaching starving orphans in Africa about feminism?) but at the end of the day you’re only getting a small part of the overall college experience. BYU has a beautiful campus and a good academic reputation, and African slaves got an all expenses paid cruise across the Atlantic. Technically true, but you’re leaving out a big part of the equation. Sure, people care about academics to an extent, but unless you’re an Ivy League or have “community” in your name, a college’s most valuable recruitment tool isn’t its average SAT scores or US New ranking and they know it. If info sessions hosted by impossibly enthusiastic students are your MPAA approved preview for a school, then overnight visits are your red band trailer. Colleges aren’t going to tell you about the cheap booze and girls with questionable standards, but they’re going to be there in the fall whether or not you got to experience them ahead of time. Might as well go in prepared.
PS- I got so fucked on my overnight visit by not getting fucked on my overnight visit it’s not even funny